Health Brief: Managing Holiday Stress
The holidays can be hard on your heart if you are typically overwhelmed by holiday stress. While your schedule may be busy, you can still keep your cool and eliminate worry from your holiday season by following a few stress-fighting strategies. Below is a closer look at what you can do to keep your stress down and enjoy the festivities of the season.
Go easy on yourself.
You should set realistic expectations for your holiday parties and meals. If you are hosting a holiday celebration at home for the first time, know that you are establishing your own traditions, so you don’t have to try to top anyone else’s celebration.
Know when to walk away.
In a high stress situation, it may be best to step aside and take a few deep breaths. By pausing and taking a moment away from the problem, you can then revisit the situation with a level head and a more receptive attitude for compromise. When you are dealing with stubborn or demanding family members, recognize your limits and politely excuse yourself when you feel the tension rising.
Make a gift-shopping budget (and stick to it).
Money can be a huge stress trigger during the holidays, so you may want to plan ahead and set a budget for all of your holiday shopping. When money is really tight, you might encourage your family to participate in Secret Santa gift exchanges that will reduce the number of names on your list. You can also find some stress-relief by getting your holiday shopping out of the way early. This way you can stop spending money earlier in the season and put your mind at ease about your gift list.
Maintain healthy habits.
You should not abandon your healthy eating habits and regular exercise just because it is the holiday season. You might miss a workout or splurge on holiday sweets, but you should not beat yourself up over these slip-ups. As long as you keep up your healthy routine between holiday celebrations, you will feel great and reduce your overall stress.
Reach out for help.
Whether you need someone to talk to or you just need a hand in the kitchen, it is always best to ask for help when it is needed. In the spirit of the season, friends and family will be happy to offer support or party-planning assistance when your schedule gets too hectic.
If holiday stress is making you feel sick this season, you can find convenient and affordable online medical consultations with MeMD. We will connect you to a real physician who can help you stay healthy even when you are too busy to get to your primary physician’s office.